Exceptional Class of 2016 Takes Next Steps

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“I am what I am and that’s all that I am. I am a North Salem graduate, Class of 2016.”

North Salem Middle/High School Principal Dr. Patricia Cyganovich implored the graduating class to embrace a mantra inspired by Popeye the Sailor, who she said represents a simpler time, as she addressed the senior class at the school’s 54th annual Commencement on June 20.

“Popeye’s confident proclamation about himself is…a powerful model for today,” she said. “Learning to know yourself and being proud of who you are and what you have become has been part of the journey of the graduates of North Salem.”

The graduates were welcomed into the culmination of that journey with a “Pomp and Circumstance” processional, courtesy of the high school band, before enjoying a rendition of the national anthem sung by the senior members of the Madrigals.

Dr. Cyagnovich shared the backgrounds of the Class of 2016’s salutatorian, Carolyn Diamond, and valedictorian, Catherine Budd, who each addressed their peers.

Family members on-hand cheered as Dr. Cyganovich announced a record-setting number of awards and scholarships that were bestowed upon the soon-to-be alumni this academic year before Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kenneth Freeston and Board of Education President Mr. Andrew Brown certified the class for its meeting of New York State standards, as well as the more rigorous North Salem High School standards.

Each student proudly walked across the stage to receive his or her diploma, accepting congratulations from Dr. Cyganovich, Dr. Freeston and Mr. Brown. The occasion ended with a lively recessional and chance for students to accept congratulations from their teachers and administrators before celebrating the end of their high school careers with their families.